Roman Helmets

Roman soldiers wore helmets made of iron or bronze. These gave good protection to the head and neck. The cheeks were guarded with special flaps on hinges. However the front of the face was not so well protected.

On the back of the helmet was a plate sticking back called a neck guard. This protected the neck from down swinging swords. There was usually a strip above the eyes too, which did the same thing.

On top of the helmet there was often a crest. This was a Mohican-like decoration, made of horse hair and coloured. The idea was to look impressive and intimidate the enemy.

Sometimes the helmet itself had decorations, perhaps of bronze, such as strips and studs, or raised parts of the iron. Some helmet types also had a topknot, a small knob on the top. The helmets were fastened on to the head using straps which were attached to the neck guard and went under the chin, attaching to the cheek guards.

On this page you can see some ancient Roman helmets and two modern replicas with crests. The crests did not last on the ancient helmets but we can see what they looked like from carvings and paintings of soldiers, like the one you see below.




Me wearing a replica